George Lewis Hontz, 76, of Ligonier, passed away at 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2012, with his family by his side.
He was born on Dec. 24, 1936 in Warsaw, to Ralph and Lillie (Tom) Hontz. He married Linda Murphy June 10, 1972.
Surviving relatives include his wife, Linda of Ligonier; son, Terry (Donna) Hontz of Ligonier; sister, Darlene (Sonny) Myers of Columbia City and a grandpuppy, Ace, whom he loved very much.
He was preceded in death by his parents, Ralph and Lillie Hontz; two brothers, Curtis and Tom Hontz and his grandparents.
Luella M. Esterline, 97, of Jefferson Township, died at 1:38 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 29, 2012, at Renaissance Village where she had been a resident since June 2011.
She was born Jan. 21, 1915, in Berne, a daughter of Peter John and Della Barbara (Kuehm) Miller. Her family resided on Liberty Mills Road and she attended Aboite Center School.
CHURUBUSCO â€” Eighteen people, including two local residents, were arrested Saturday night after police were tipped off to a dog-fighting contest.
On Friday, Whitley County Sheriffâ€™s Department detectives were tipped off to the contest, that scheduled to take place Saturday night at Eddie Smithâ€™s home at 906 E. Ind. 205 in Churubusco.
The investigation led to a search warrant, and at approximately 11 p.m., officers from the Whitley County Sheriffâ€™s Department and Indiana State Police raided the home, taking 18 people and three dogs into custody.
COLUMBIA CITY â€” Less than a week after receiving their first votes in the Associated Press poll, Columbia Cityâ€™s boys basketball team lost its first game of the season Friday.
Their opponent was no slouch. The Munster Mustangs are 8-0 and ranked No. 5 in the state by the AP. Columbia City played a tight first half with the Mustangs before falling 66-54.
The Eagles took 4-0 and 7-2 leads early in the first quarter with buckets by Daniel Woll and Derek Hinen, holding Munster to two field goals in the first four minutes.
Editorâ€™s note: The following is the fifth of a six-part series.
CHURUBUSCO â€” A Churubusco manâ€™s search for his familyâ€™s history led him to a much larger story. Chuck Mathieu opened the Churubusco History Center in March of 2011 with Chuck Jones. His interest in history though began with his own family.
Mathieu began by going backwards from his mother and then tracing the generations forward from David Craig. He said there was a lost generation for which he could not account. Then, a second cousin in Florida sent him the Craig family Bible, which closed the remaining gaps.
COLUMBIA CITY â€” Residents have until Monday to complete their homestead verification forms to declare a Whitley County property as their primary residence.
Whitley County Auditor Jenny McGuire said there were still 762 people, as of 4 p.m. Friday afternoon, who still have not declared or verified their county of residence.
However, she added that some may have done so through the stateâ€™s website. Citizens have until Monday to do so. McGuire noted that the county office will be closed on Monday, but residents still have options.
COLUMBIA CITY â€” By the numbers, Whitley County had an increase in new citizens during 2012. There were 225 births in Whitley County in 2012, as of Dec. 18. That is an increase compared to 188 in 2011 and 185 in 2010.
â€śI think a lot of that was because of the new ob/gynâ€™s at the hospital,â€ť said Joann Miller, office administrator of the Whitley County Health Department.
The number of deaths held steady compared to previous years, with 229 as of Dec. 18, compared to 234 and 233 in the previous two years.
Dian Ruth Wrightsman, 59, of rural South Whitley, died at 2:56 a.m. Friday, Dec. 28, 2012, at Saint Johnâ€™s Hospital, Anderson, where she was admitted Christmas Day while visiting family. She had been suffering from cancer.
She was born Oct. 23, 1953, in South Bend, the only child of James William and Evelyn (McClellan) Moore.Her formative years were spent in Albuquerque, N.M. and Daytona Beach, Fla. The family then returned to the Jimtown area.
Columbia City's boys basketball team is hosting Munster tonight at 8 p.m.
Both teams are 8-0 and Munster is ranked No. 5 in the state by the Associated Press.
Elsa Marie Rodriguez-Kahn, 50, of Fort Wayne, was called home after a courageous battle with cancer Wednesday, Dec. 26, 2012, at home with her family by her side. She was a member of the St. Joseph Catholic Church.
She worked at G.M. in the human resources department as a benefits representative.
â€śEverything we ever needed to know you instilled in us. Thank you, mom,â€ťsaid her children.